Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Six Roadrunners collect All-Conference USA accolades

Six Roadrunners collect All-Conference USA accolades
(Dec. 5, 2017) -- Led by first-team pick Marcus Davenport and second-team selections Matt Bayliss and Kevin Strong Jr., six members of the UTSA football team collected All-Conference USA accolades in a vote by the league’s 14 head coaches, the conference office announced today.

Davenport, a senior defensive end from San Antonio Stevens High School, collected his third career all-conference certificate. A second-team selection last year and an honorable mention pick in 2015, he became the third Roadrunner to earn first-team all-conference honors, joining Josiah Tauaefa (2016 C-USA) and Triston Wade (2012 WAC).

Davenport posted 55 tackles and set school records with 17.5 tackles for loss, 8.5 sacks and eight quarterback hurries this season. A member of the Chuck Bednarik Award and Wuerffel Trophy watch lists and a Senior CLASS Award candidate, he added four pass breakups, three forced fumbles and a fumble return for a touchdown. He was named C-USA Defensive Player of the Week on Oct. 23 after recording 11 stops, 3.5 TFLs and a pair of sacks and returning a fumble 34 yards for a TD in the 20-7 win against Rice. Davenport finished his UTSA career as the program’s all-time leader in tackles for loss (38.0), sacks (22.0) and QB hurries (21), and he has accepted an invitation to play in the Reese’s Senior Bowl on Jan. 27 in Mobile, Ala.

Bayliss picked up his second career all-conference certificate with his second-team selection one year after being named honorable mention. The senior deep snapper had more than 90 snaps without a miscue this fall and he was a key part of a special teams group that produced semifinalists for the Lou Groza Award and Ray Guy Award. The Tulsa, Okla., native helped UTSA’s punt coverage team limit opponents to just eight returns for 23 yards (2.9 avg) on 47 punts, while the field goal unit converted a school-record 20 field goals and 25 extra points.

Strong Jr. collected his first career all-league honor with his second-team nod. The junior defensive lineman registered 27 tackles, seven tackles for loss, three sacks and four quarterback hurries this fall. He had a season-high 2.5 tackles for loss in the 44-14 win at Texas State and he posted a sack apiece in the victories against Baylor, Rice and Marshall. The Cleveland, Texas, native started all 11 contests for a defense that leads C-USA in five different statistical categories. UTSA allowed just 287.8 total yards, 160.1 passing yards and 17 points per game, marks that rank seventh, third and eighth, respectively, in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS).

La’Kel Bass, Nate Gaines and Jared Sackett all picked up honorable mention accolades.

Bass led UTSA with 68 tackles and he added 7.5 tackles for loss, a pair of sacks, two fumble recoveries and a quarterback hurry. The senior from St. Louis, Mo., posted 56 of his stops, five TFLs and both fumble recoveries in conference play. The linebacker turned in a season-high 11 tackles, including a sack, and he recovered a fumble in the 9-7 victory against Marshall. Bass had nine stops and a pair of TFLs against Southern Miss and he recorded eight tackles against both Rice and FIU.

Gaines posted 41 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss and a team-leading four interceptions, which tied the program’s single-season record. The senior free safety picked off three passes and had 80 percent of his stops during C-USA action. He turned in a 15-yard interception return to go along with three tackles in the triumph over UTEP, one pick and five tackles against North Texas and a season-high eight stops and a 35-yard INT return in the season finale at Louisiana Tech. Gaines, who hails from Mesquite Poteet High School, had an interception and a pair of tackles in the 17-10 season-opening victory at Baylor.

Sackett, a Lou Groza Award semifinalist who also was voted to the C-USA All-Freshman Team, made a school-record 19 field goals on 22 attempts (86.4 percent) in his debut season despite not kicking in the season opener at Baylor. A product of Timber Creek High School, he split the uprights on his first eight tries, was a perfect 3-for-3 in three different games and booted two or more field goals in seven of his 10 contests. Sackett was named C-USA Special Teams Player of the Week on Nov. 20 after he made all three attempts, including the game-winner from 40 yards with two seconds left, in the 9-7 victory against Marshall. The Fort Worth native leads C-USA and ranks third in the FBS with 1.9 field goals per game and he also is third in the league and 13th nationally in field goal percentage.

2017 C-USA Football All-Conference Teams

First Team

Offense:
QB – Mason Fine, So., North Texas
RB – Devin Singletary, So., Florida Atlantic
RB – Ito Smith, Sr., Southern Miss
OL – Reggie Bain, R-Jr., Florida Atlantic
OL – Roman Fernandez, R-Sr., Florida Atlantic
OL – Antonyo Woods, Sr., Florida Atlantic
OL – Will Hernandez, Sr., UTEP
OL – Brandon Ray, R-Sr., WKU
TE – Ryan Yurachek, Sr., Marshall
WR – Thomas Owens, Sr., FIU
WR – Tyre Brady, R-Jr., Marshall
WR – Korey Robertson, Jr., Southern Miss

Defense:
DL – Jaylon Ferguson, Jr., Louisiana Tech
DL – Oshane Ximines, Jr., Old Dominion
DL – Brian Womac, Sr., Rice
DL – Marcus Davenport, Sr., UTSA
LB – Azeez Al-Shaair, Jr., Florida Atlantic
LB – Emmanuel Ellerbee, Sr., Rice
LB – Joel Iyiegbuniwe, Jr., WKU
DB – Jalen Young, Jr., Florida Atlantic
DB – Shelton Lewis, Jr., Florida Atlantic
DB – Secdrick Cooper, Sr., Louisiana Tech
DB – Darious Williams, R-Jr., UAB

Special Teams:
K – Parker Shaunfield, Jr., Southern Miss
P – Kaare Vedvik, R-Sr., Marshall
KR – Isaiah Harper, Jr., Old Dominion
PR – Darrell Brown, So., Old Dominion
LS – Cameron Linck, GS, Louisiana Tech

Second Team

Offense:
QB – Mike White, Gr-Sr., WKU
RB – Jeffery Wilson, Sr., North Texas
RB – Spencer Brown, Fr., UAB
OL – Jordan Budwig, Sr., FIU
OL – O’Shea Dugas, Jr., Louisiana Tech
OL – Levi Brown, R-So., Marshall
OL – Devin Farrior, Sr., Southern Miss
OL – Chris Schleuger, R-Sr., UAB
TE – Harrison Bryant, So., Florida Atlantic
WR – Teddy Veal, R-Jr., Louisiana Tech
WR – Ty Lee, So., Middle Tennessee
WR – Jalen Guyton, R-So., North Texas

Defense:
DL – Fermin Silva, Jr., FIU
DL – Ryan Bee, Sr., Marshall
DL – Xavier Thigpen, Sr., Southern Miss
DL – Kevin Strong Jr, Jr., UTSA
LB – Anthony Wint, Sr., FIU
LB – Chase Hancock, R-Jr., Marshall
LB – Khalil Brooks, R-So., Middle Tennessee
DB – Brad Muhammad, Sr., FIU
DB – Amik Robertson, Fr., LA Tech
DB – Malik Gant, R-So., Marshall
DB – Curtis Mikell, Sr., Southern Miss

Special Teams:
K – Trevor Moore, Sr., North Texas
P – Jack Fox, Jr., Rice
KR – Keion Davis, R-Jr., Marshall
PR – Austin Trammell, Fr., Rice
LS – Matt Bayliss, Sr. UTSA

Honorable Mention (UTSA players only)

Defense:
LB – La’Kel Bass, Sr., UTSA
DB – Nate Gaines, Sr., UTSA

Special Teams:
K – Jared Sackett, Fr., UTSA

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